Greens set to make a difference

Flag_of_Europe.svgI’ll be voting Green tomorrow morning in the EU elections.

It seems I won’t be alone as the Green Party of England and Wales stands a good chance of coming fourth ahead of the Liberal Democrats (and behind UKIP, Labour and the Conservatives – perhaps in that order).  I will vote Labour in the next UK general election, almost without a doubt, as I live in a marginal constituency (Corby –  a Labour/Conservative marginal) where my vote really matters. And my Local MP, Andy Sawford, is a good guy and will certainly get my support – and active support too.

But in this EU election, voting Green is not just a protest vote – it’s a ‘Wake up!’ vote. A good showing for the Greens will have an impact, perhaps, on the main party manifestos in the next general election, and I want to see all of our political parties treating environmental issues more seriously.

Why else am I voting Green? I do support many of the Green Party’s policies, although others seem a bit daft to me.  But that is true of all the political parties. That’s life. Here is a useful place to check which party is closest to your beliefs. And listen here to hear what they say about the environment.

A while ago I heard Evan Davies (I think it was) ‘interviewing’ Natalie Bennett and he seemed to want to talk about dustbins in Brighton most of the time. I think the point was that when the Greens get in power they maybe aren’t very good at it. Well, I don’t think the EU will be run by Greens next week, although if it were, I’d take the chance on them making a half-decent job of it.

I remember plenty of times being on interview panels when someone would say that a particular outstanding candidate was ‘a bit young for the job’ or ‘not quite ready’ and I was never impressed by that.  Let’s give the young and inexperienced a chance if, and the ‘if’ is important, if we think they are good enough and we think their heart is in the right place.  We’ll never find out how competent and incompetent the Greens are until we see them succeed or fall flat on their faces.

Caroline Lucas, voted as this blog’s MP of the year last December, certainly has been a breath of fresh air in Westminster and has raised the passion and level of debate on environmental issues. She’s very impressive and learned some of her skills, and acquired some of her knowledge, through being an MEP – there are probably a few more people out there who could do the same thing.

You make up your own mind. I’ve made up mine. despite being a Labour Party member I am voting Green in the EU elections tomorrow.



13 Replies to “Greens set to make a difference”

    1. Matthew – I found it interesting too. However you are going to vote – I hope you do vote tomorrow.

  1. The Greens in Brighton and Hove have kept all sure start centres and libraries open despite facing the largest austerity grant cuts in the south east, have brought in a living wage for council staff and succeeded in promoting the same in the private sector, have reduced pay differentials between highest and lowest paid to the lowest level in over a decade, have secured over £80m in external funding, notably from EU grants and the heritage lottery fund, which has enabled new cycle and bus lanes to be be built, a previously dangerous roundabout to be completely redesigned and a the city’s main park to be lovingly revamped with a new playground, skatepark and cafés. A reduction in the speed limit in residential streets to 20mph strongly supported by a plebiscite consultation will cut accident rates substantially.

    The bin strike last year was very much the result of previous administrations passing the buck on their duty to implement equal pay legislation which was outstanding since the creation of the unitary authority in 1997. The last bin strike in 2003 was settled with arbitrary allowances to male bin workers which were extremely dodgy and a similar case in Birmingham left that council with a £900m bill for compensation payouts is likely to result in thousands of job losses. Contrary to the whispering campaign by the Labour Party and their cronies in the local press, the Greens have done a very good job running the city in their first term.

  2. Harriet Harman emailed me to make sure I was still voting tomorrow. Changing parties is like changing teams. I am Leeds but hang on, Manure have a new manager may be I should give them a go. Not in a life time! It is my blood. Who cares if we have not won anything in a while. By sticking together we build a future. MOT [Marching on Together!]

  3. The Vote Match thing says:
    On 12 points I disagree with XXX Party
    On 7 points I agree with YYY Party
    The Vote Match thing says my views have the most in common with: XXX Party.
    The Vote Match thing is as duplicitous as a politician

    There’s several minutes of my life I won’t have again

  4. Absolutely on the money, Jack.

    The Labour and Tory administrations had, for 15 years, been paying staff in a discriminatory manner, and it’s something they were both proud of.

    The Greens mopped up their mess, and both parties started grizzling. We have, in Brighton & Hove, a leader of the Labour group, who almost always sides with the Tory group, against his party’s wishes, and who refused to condemn the EDL; it’s possible he could be council leader next year.

  5. Hi mark,
    I voted green too (by post) and agree that in the EU the green group really make a great difference. I’ve worked with some wonderful green MEPs from across Europe although I have to say that in terms of UK MEPs I found many of the lib dems to be fantastic! Sadly some of the best ones may not be there for much longer….maybe they should defect!

  6. Green gets my vote too – indeed they have been for a long time now. I don’t agree with all their policies, far from it, but I do agree with the wider ethos which underpins them. I agree that Caroline Lucas is a star – I imagine that making a mark in parliament when you are the only representative of your party is quite an achievement.

  7. When Ed Milliband was a Minister in the last Government, he gave the go-ahead for wind farms to be erected around a NNR.

  8. Mark,

    If you support the Greens now, then support them in the next general election too. Please don’t support the same tired old system whose policies are effectively destroying our countryside and planet

    They are the only party with policies conservationists should be voting for.

    Can you say which policies you think are “a bit daft” please too?

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